- Review Process
- Take Action
- A project of
In this inquiry students investigate the issues surrounding carbon emissions and the concept of a ‘carbon footprint’. With this understanding they use tools identified in the resource to calculate their own carbon footprints and compare them with other students both locally and from other countries around the world. After analyzing and discussing their findings, students are asked to formulate individual action plans in an effort to reduce their personal carbon emissions.Students are given support towards the successful implementation of their plans. While this is intended to be a largely student-driven inquiry, necessary background information along with helpful guidance and suggestions have been included.
Topics addressed include: carbon, carbon footprint, carbon dioxide, combustion of fossil fuels, greenhouse gases, global warming and climate change.
An updated link to the footprint calculator can be found here.
The activities in this resource will help connect secondary students in a concrete way to any discussion of climate change.
The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives||Very Good|
Students conduct their own research and investigation. In doing so they will establish their own perspectives regarding issues relating to carbon emissions.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives: |
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions||Good|
Using the footprint calculators and establishing and then acting to reduce their personal carbon footprints will require consideration of all three dimensions.
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions: |
Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.
While research into greenhouse gases and carbon emissions is the responsibility of the students, the tools and support provided are designed to reveal the complexity of the issues.
|Respects Complexity: |
The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.
|Acting on Learning||Good|
Action opportunities are included as core components and are supported by the resource.
|Acting on Learning: |
Learning moves from understanding issues to working towards positive change — in personal lifestyle, in school, in the community, or for the planet
|Values Education||Very Good|
Students document and reflect on their own behavior before developing personal action plans to address their findings.
|Values Education: |
Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.
|Empathy & Respect for Humans||Poor/Not considered|
|Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).|
|Personal Affinity with Earth||Satisfactory|
While the resource aims to inform and promote more sustainable decision making, especially in regards to carbon emissions, it does not specifically direct attention to 'nature' or individual components of the natural world.
|Personal Affinity with Earth: |
Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.
|Locally-Focused Learning||Very Good|
The resource focuses student attention on their own carbon consumption. Students then act on what they have learned for the benefit of the local community.
|Locally-Focused Learning: |
Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community.
|Past, Present & Future||Poor/Not considered|
This is not a necessary component for this activity.
|Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.|
|Open-Ended Instruction||Very Good|
The resource provides for a student-driven investigation into carbon emissions and personal responsibility.
Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.
The resource supports a systems thinking approach and incorporates social, economic and environmental concerns. It will have application in social studies, science and geography content areas.
|Integrated Learning: |
Learning brings together content and skills from more than one subject area
|Inquiry Learning: |
Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.
There is a significant research requirement in the activities that some learners may struggle with. The action component will address a wider range of abilities and learning styles.
|Differentiated Instruction: |
Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.
|Experiential Learning||Very Good|
The footprint calculation and resulting 'acting on learning' provide for direct experience in a real world setting.
|Experiential Learning: |
Authentic learning experiences are provided
The activities offer a balance between individual work/responsibility and group discussion/collaboration.
|Cooperative Learning: |
Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.
|Assessment & Evaluation||Poor/Not considered|
Assessment tools are not provided by the resource.
|Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.|
|Peer Teaching||Poor/Not considered|
While not a component of the resource's core activities, opportunities for peer teaching are evident in the extension suggestions.
|Peer Teaching: |
Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.
The footprint tools that students use in their calculations rely on real events, situations and data.
|Case Studies: |
Relevant case studies are included. Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events from real situations that students use to explore concepts in an authentic context.
|Locus of Control||Good|
The student inquiry model of the resource allows students to direct much of their own learning.
|Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.|